How to Collect Boxing Memorabilia

You can express your passion for the sport of boxing by collecting vintage photos of various events, promotional items like banners and gifts with the fighter’s name on them, or by buying garments that were worn by the boxer.

To get started you will want to learn about various champion boxers who graced the ring. Since boxing is an ancient sport, having originated in the 1800s, many of the rules that are followed in the sport today have been preserved from long ago. Once you discover some of the greats, then you can begin collecting trading cards that have pictures of famous boxers on them, such as Jim Jeffries from the Pre-War era, or Jake LaMotta from the 1948 Leaf collection, or even Don Eagle from the 1951 Ringside collection.

By looking at various collections, and getting familiar with the boxing legends, you will soon discover more about the National Boxing Association that came into existence in the early 1920s. Besides live fights, television helped the sport to grow because fans from around the world could attend a championship fight from the comfort of their living rooms.

Before making a huge investment in boxing memorabilia, it’s best to start small; buy a few sports cards, casino chips, a photo cigar band, or a ticket stub. Many of these types of items can be purchased through an online store, at antique stores, or at sporting conventions. The main idea is to become familiar with the sport, if you’re not already, and then see what dealers are selling and for what amount.

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After your purchase an item, place it in a box to preserve its condition. Then as you buy more items, you can separate each type of memento either by player or by the type of collectible. For sure, it would serve you well to purchase a little lined spiral notebook to record each purchase, along with the date, price you paid, the name of the boxer, weight class, or ranking.

You can decide how you want to categorize your collection, but it’s much easier to start an inventory at the beginning of your hobby rather than years later when you might not remember the price you paid or where you bought it.

Certainly, if you’re unfamiliar with the history of boxing you will want to study the highlights of the 1960s when a fighter known as Cassius Clay was boxing in the ring. He later changed his name to the famous Muhammad Ali. People say that he was responsible for changing boxing forever. Any collector will tell you that your collection should include memorabilia from Ali.

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Many collectors like to hunt for apparel that was worm by boxers since the fabrics are so shiny and flashy. When you’re able to find such items as boxing shoes, gloves, embroidered robes, towels, trunks and similar items, your collection will definitely increase in value.

As a final caution while you’re beginning your boxing collection, be sure that when you purchase any signed garments that you ask for a certificate of authenticity, known as a COA, from the person or dealer who sells it to you. In addition, you can have an agency appraise it and then you can notify your insurance company if it’s a very valuable keepsake.

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by Richard Budnick